Toronto 2012: Exclusive Media Makes Bold Foray Into U.S. Distribution

Daniel Radcliffe in "The Woman in Black."

Dubbed Exclusive Releasing, the new outfit will be headed by veteran executives Scott Pascucci and Matt Brodlie.

TORONTO -- There’s a new player in the domestic distribution and acquisitions arena.

Exclusive Media is launching Exclusive Releasing, a U.S. distribution company to be headed by veteran executives Scott Pascucci and Matt Brodlie. Insiders say Exclusive Releasing will likely acquire Millennium Films' distribution division, giving it instant infrastructure.

Pascucci, who recently joined Exclusive from Grove Street Prods., will serve as president and chief operating officer. Brodlie will head up acquisitions, as he did for Paramount.

The move comes on the eve of the Toronto International Film Festival, where Exclusive Releasing will be on the prowl for pickups to feed its new release slate.

Parent company Exclusive Media has three of its own films in official selection in Toronto: the crime drama End of Watch starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena, which Open Road Films will bow in the U.S.; Ramin Bahrani’s At Any Price, featuring Dennis Quaid and Zac Efron, a Sony Pictures Classics release; and Disconnect, an ensemble drama featuring Jason Bateman, Hope Davis and Frank Grillo.

Exclusive Media co-chairmen Nigel Sinclair and Guy East said Exclusive Releasing plans to distribute three or four wide releases a year, both in-house produced films as well as third-party titles. Veteran marketer Mike Vollman is consulting for the new division.

Exclusive Media's move into the crowded domestic distribution waters follows the box-office success of The Woman in Black, which CBS Films distributed in the U.S. on behalf of Exclusive. The supernatural horror title, starring Daniel Radcliffe, was a surprise hit, earning more than $54 million in the U.S. and $128 million worldwide.

Having its own domestic distribution operation gives Exclusive Media more flexibility -- and control.

"The launch of Exclusive Releasing is the exciting and logical next step for Exclusive Media to be involved in all aspects of the filmmaking and distribution of our movies from development through production and into theaters,” East and Sinclair said in a statement. “We are thrilled that we have Scott and Matt joining us to put this division together."

Exclusive Releasing also will acquire films for VOD and digital platforms as well as develop and buy alternative content, including concert films and music documentaries.

Insiders say Open Road might do some of the booking for the new operation.

Upcoming films on Exclusive Media’s production slate include John Carney’s Can a Song Save Your Life? with Keira Knightley, Mark Ruffalo and Catherine Keener; and Rush, Ron Howard’s Formula 1 film starring Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Bruhl

Pamela McClintock contributed to this report.